Dole Garden Soups + Keeping it Real

Thank you Dole Packaged Foods and Mom it Forward Blog Network for sponsoring this post as it allows me to keep on doing what it is I love to do: blog! As always, all opinions and thoughts are 100% my own. Dole Garden Soups are a weeknight dinner dream and today I’m sharing some of my favorite ways to doctor up prepackaged soup!

Dole Garden Soups |
Dole Garden Soups come in five varieties and you can expect a bowl of garden-fresh vegetable soup.

Blogging can be deceptive. From the outside, it’s easy to think we cook all the time and make picture perfect meals ala Martha Stewart for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Spoiler alert: it’s not even close to the truth. When I’m cooking for the blog, I plan a day to bang out a bunch of recipes and photograph them one after another when both my kiddos are in school. While we do eat everything I make (no food wasted in the Epstein house), it’s often reheated and our dinner table never looks like our photo shoots- that I can assure you!

Dole Garden Soup |
Tomato Vegetable soup with olive tapenade, butter crackers and parmesan cheese.

I, like every other working mom in the world, struggle to put a hot dinner on the table every night. While I cook a lot (a lot!) and probably more than the average person, I still have times when I’m too tired to cook again or just don’t have enough time to pull something fully homemade together. I’m not too proud to take some help from the world of prepackaged food and Dole’s new line of Garden Soups fit the bill flawlessly. The soups are certified gluten free, non GMO, have no preservatives or MSG and the envoirnmentalist in me loves the eco friendly, PBA-free packaging.

Dole Garden Soup |
Carrot Ginger soup with cooked quinoa, a scoop of natural peanut butter and fresh cilantro.

The ready-to-serve soups are a busy weeknight’s dinner dream. Within just a few minutes I can have a hot dinner on the table. I’m lucky that both my kids will eat soup- the older loves the Sweet Corn and the little one dove in head first to the Tomato Vegetable. While the soups are delicious on their own and would pair perfectly with a toasty grilled cheese or the like, sometimes I don’t even have time to make a sandwich. Keeping in theme with the garden-fresh flavors and already vegetarian soups, I added a few of my favorite “toppers” to jazz the soup up a bit with all things I always have in my fridge.

Dole Garden Soup |
Southwestern Black Bean & Corn with fresh tomato, avocado, cilantro and tortilla chips.

On those nights when it’s too much for me to make dinner, I can now feel less guilty and we can still enjoy a warm, satisfying dinner! Thank you Dole Garden Soup for making the weeknight dinner crunch easy peasy. If you want to learn more about Dole Garden Soups, you can visit them on their website, Facebook or Twitter.

Have a great weekend, everybody!! Sorry for the lack of The Goods this week. Life got in the way and it’s all I could do to get a shower yesterday. Next week for sure!!

Here are some fun recipes using the soup as a base:
Enchiladas with Southwestern Black Bean Sauce
Tomato Vegetable Chicken Cacciatore
Carrot Ginger & Basil Popsicles
Sautéed Shrimp with Roasted Garlic Tomato Basil
Sweet Corn Fritters